Julian Leeser MP, Member for Berowra NSW, recently raised the importance of high quality early phonics instruction in federal parliament. Mr Leeser emphasised the need for explicit literacy instruction in schools which focuses on the relationships between sounds and letter patterns in English. The CEO of SPELD NSW, Georgina Perry, provided pertinent comments regarding this matter which have been included in Hansard.
Mr Leeser also outlined the success of the year 1 phonics screening test in England and the results of the phonics check trial in South Australia. Ms Perry is quoted as saying, “The phonics check is a valuable tool as it helps teachers confirm their students are learning essential phonics skills and may help identify those students who are having difficulty learning to read.”
Earlier this year, Federal Education Minister The Honourable Dan Tehan MP announced a review of the Melbourne Declaration. In 2008, the Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians was signed by all Australian Education Ministers at the time. It set out two main goals for education in Australia:
The promotion of equity and excellence in Australian schools; and,
That all young Australians become successful learners, confident and creative individuals, and active and informed citizens.
Submissions to the review were invited from education stakeholders and community members. AUSPELD and LDA (Learning Difficulties Australia) completed a joint submission which can be viewed here.
This accessible and punchy series, overseen by researchED founder Tom Bennett, tackles the most important topics in education, with a range of experienced contributors exploring the latest evidence and research and how it can apply in a variety of classroom settings.
The value and use of explicit instruction to improve academic outcomes is explored across a range of settings and subject areas. Incorporating compelling evidence from the cognitive sciences, the writers include: Kris Boulton; Greg Ashman; Gethyn Jones; Tom Needham; Lia Martin and Amy Coombe; Naveen Rivzi; Hannah Stoten; John Blake; Sarah Barker; Summer Turner; Sarah Cullen and Zig Englemann. Editor: Adam Boxer.
Guide to Educational Myths
The most damaging myths that continue to circulate in education settings are identified and discussed in this edition by a selection of evidence informed writers including: Clare Sealy, Tom Sherrington, Andrew Old, Mark Enser, Robert and Elizabeth Bjork, Harry Fletcher Wood, Greg Ashman and Doug Lemov. Editor: Craig Barton.
Guide to Literacy
What do we mean by literacy, why it matters and what happens if we don’t get it right? An exploration of this important area with contributions from: Kathy Rastle, Rhona
Stainthorp, Tom Needham, Alex Quigley, Jessie Ricketts, Kevin and Robyn Wheldall, Kerry Hempenstall and Dianne Murphy. Editors: James Murphy and Tom Bennett.
Guide to the Curriculum
How can schools get the most out of a rich curriculum? Contributors to this title include: Neil Almond; Andrew Percival; Doug Lemov and Emily Badillo; Sonia Thompson; Christine Counsell; Michael Young; Ruth Ashbee; and Aurora Reid. Editor: Clare Sealy.
Each ResearchED guide is priced at $24 each, or $60 for any three, and $80 for any four.
The Specific Learning Disorders Flow Chart is a useful reference for anyone working with students with SLD. It provides an overview of the types of specific learning disorders including identifying characteristics and underlying processing impairments. The flow chart outlines the functional impact of a learning disorder in the classroom and the implications for intervention. Recommendations for adjustments and accommodations are also detailed.
Two versions of the flow chart are provided below: a printable version designed to be printed double-sided onto A3 paper, and a PDF version suited to viewing on computer or another electronic device.
A web version and a downloadable PDF of Understanding Learning Difficulties: A Guide for Parents (Revised Edition) are now available free of charge on the ULD for Parents website.
This Guide has recently been revamped to provide parents and carers with additional information about the nature of learning disabilities in children, and to offer up-to-date practical guidance on the most appropriate identification, intervention and support.
The first AUSPELD Understanding Learning Difficulties: A Practical Guide was published in 2014 and rapidly became a must-have title for any educator or allied professional supporting students with learning difficulties or specific learning disorders. The guides provide readers with an in-depth understanding of learning difficulties and specific learning disorders, and also share advice and practical information on the best approaches to use with students who have learning difficulties or diagnosed specific learning disorders.
Additional information and several new tip sheets have also been added to the latest edition.
You can also purchase hard copies of the parents and other revised guides from the Resources page.
Internationally recognised education advisor Carol Allen is coming to Australia this year. Carol’s expertise in the area of ICT and learning difficulties is highly sought-after in the UK, and she was recognised as a “Top-ten Educator Using Technology” for 2018 by the UK parliament.
Carol will be presenting full-day teacher workshops in five capital cities focusing on how to use assistive technology as an integrated support rather than a stand alone activity. The workshops will be packed full of activities, including interactive demonstrations, which teachers will immediately be able to take away and add to their toolkit of potential ideas.
Carol has been teaching since 1980 in both primary and secondary mainstream schools, and schools for students with learning difficulties. As an English specialist, Carol is aware that communication lies at the heart of all effective teaching. As a result, the majority of her work has centred on the creative and engaging use of technology to support struggling students.
Carol Allen’s work centres on easy to replicate practice which is fun, achievable and will improve educational outcomes. Carol has provided workshops and keynote presentations in Denmark, Geneva, ATIA Florida, Riyadh, BETT, Birmingham, Manchester, London and Australia.
Carol Allen’s 2019 Australian Tour Dates and Locations
AUSPELD was a proud supporter of the DSF Language, Literacy and Learning Conference which took place in April this year. The filmed keynote presentations from the conference are now available to interested parties for a limited period. Online access is ideal for people who were unable to attend the conference in person as well as for delegates seeking to review these incredible presentations. The films may also be viewed with colleagues at staff or team meetings.
The cost to access these high quality and informative films for a six month period is:
The first AUSPELD Understanding Learning Difficulties: A Practical Guide was published in 2014 and rapidly became a must-have title for any educator or allied professional supporting students with learning difficulties or specific learning disorders. The two guides, one for teachers and one for parents, provide readers with an in-depth understanding of learning difficulties and specific learning disorders. The guides also share advice and practical information on the best approaches to use with students who have learning difficulties or diagnosed specific learning disorders.
After almost five years, the guides have now been revised to ensure they reflect current, evidence-based practice. Additional information and several new tip sheets have also been added to the latest edition.
Hard copies of the revised guides can be purchased here.
LETRS is a research-based professional development that leads to more effective instruction and improved student outcomes. The course is now available in Australia as a two-year course of study incorporating online coursework, in-person workshops, accompanying print resources and online support.
LETRS courses commence on the following dates:
Thursday 11th July
New South Wales
Saturday 13th July
Monday 15th July
Courses in South Australia and Western Australia are already in progress and new dates will be released soon.
A LETRS brochure can be downloaded here and course dates are listed here.
The Understanding Learning Difficulties e-Learning course was designed by DSF (Dyslexia-SPELD WA) and is proudly supported by AUSPELD. This online learning program consists of six interactive modules that systematically cover: an introduction to learning difficulties and learning disorders; the cognitive processing skills implicated in learning; and, the response to intervention model. Participants will also learn about how to reduce the incidence of literacy and numeracy difficulties, remediate learning difficulties and put in place appropriate support strategies and accommodations.
The e-learning course was designed to equip teachers, school psychologists, speech pathologists, specialist tutors and parents with the knowledge required to support students with learning difficulties throughout their education. To find out more about the e-learning course please visit the DSF ULD course page.